I asked Victoria to talk about how she became interested in Austen inspired fiction and this was her response:
It was when I was about 13 that I first became aware of Jane Austen through the 1940 black and white film adaptation of Pride and Prejudice starring Laurence Olivier and Greer Garson. I adored it but I didn't read Pride and Prejudice until I was 17 and it was many years later that I decided to write a trilogy about Jane Austen addicts. I’d been visiting many of the Jane Austen locations: her beautiful home at Chawton in Hampshire, the little church at Steventon, Lyme Regis on the Dorset coast and the magnificent Georgian city of Bath, and I couldn’t help thinking how much fun it would be to write a series of books each set in a different Austen location. I also wanted to explore what it would be like to live with a Jane Austen addict. What did my husband think every time he walked through the living room to find his wife watching yet another version of Persuasion? Did he worry about my obsession with the Austen hero?
I also asked Victoria how her version of Jane Austen's characters differ and compare to the originals and this was her response:
My characters aren’t directly inspired by Jane Austen’s characters – it wasn’t my intention to update her books. I wanted to write about modern characters who are besotted by Austen’s books and to look at how they might see Austen as a wonderful escape from the stresses and strains of modern-day life. But, thinking about my characters, they do share similarities to some of Austen’s characters. Two of my favourite Austen heroines are Marianne Dashwood and Catherine Morland. I love Marianne’s passion for life and Catherine’s tendency to daydream and I think Robyn in A Weekend with Mr Darcy shares some of these traits as does Kay in the second book in the trilogy, Dreaming of Mr Darcy. Kay is also a hopeless match-maker so she has something in common with Emma Woodhouse!
I like to think that my heroes are as dashing as Austen’s own. Warwick Lawton in A Weekend with Mr Darcy rather reminds me of Willoughby because he’s not altogether honest with my heroine, Katherine. He’s not as badly behaved as Willoughby, though! That would never do!
Check out my review of A Weekend With Mr. Darcy in tomorrow's posts!
Sourcebooks is sponsoring a giveaway for two copies of Victoria Connelly's book, A Weekend with Mr. Darcy. These copies will go to two lucky winners from Debbie's Book Bag!
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~ The deadline to enter this giveaway is Midnight EST August 2nd.
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